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Pompeo speaks with South Korean counterpart after Trump nixes Kim summit

Pompeo speaks with South Korean counterpart after Trump nixes Kim summit
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Secretary of State Mike PompeoMichael (Mike) Richard PompeoPompeo knocks Turkey in NATO speech: report The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Mastercard - Dem leaders back smaller COVID-19 relief bill as pandemic escalates US to temporarily withdraw some embassy personnel in Baghdad: report MORE reaffirmed Washington's commitment to the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula in a phone call with his South Korean counterpart on Friday, the State Department announced.

Pompeo's phone call with South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha came a day after President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden says GOP senators have called to congratulate him Biden: Trump attending inauguration is 'of consequence' to the country Biden says family will avoid business conflicts MORE abruptly canceled a planned June 12 meeting in Singapore with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un.

State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement that Pompeo and Kang vowed to "create conditions for dialogue with North Korea" and that the U.S. and South Korea would not stop until Pyongyang agreed to abandon its nuclear program.

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In his letter announcing the cancellation, Trump said that he was willing to engage with Kim if Pyongyang put aside its "hostilities" toward the U.S. A top North Korean official said as much in response to Trump's move Thursday.

Pompeo's phone call with Kang appeared to be an effort to reassure a key U.S. ally who was caught off-guard by Trump's decision to back out of the meeting.

South Korean President Moon Jae-in said on Thursday that he was "very perplexed" by the cancellation and urged Trump to engage in talks with Kim. 

South Korea often acted as an intermediary between Washington and Pyongyang as the planned summit between Trump and Kim took shape in recent weeks.

Moon has been an outspoken advocate for engagement with North Korea. In a historic meeting between Kim and Moon last month, the two leaders agreed to work toward a formal end to the decades-long Korean War, which stalled in 1953 after an armistice was signed.